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Nick Barnett Named 2003 NFL Rookie Of The Year Finalist


The National Football League Friday announced the five finalists for the 2003 PEPSI NFL Rookie Of The Year award.


Nick Barnett, LB, Green Bay Packers

Anquan Boldin, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Domanick Davis, RB, Houston Texans

Andre Johnson, WR, Houston Texans

Terrell Suggs, LB, Baltimore Ravens

Fans can vote for one of these five players on or from January 2 through January 22 to determine the 2003 PEPSI NFL Rookie Of The Year.

The winner will be presented the 2003 PEPSI NFL Rookie Of The Year award during a press conference in Houston, the site of Super Bowl XXXVIII, on Thursday, January 29, 2004. CBS Sports' Deion Sanders, a two-time Super Bowl winner, will host the press conference.

The five finalists were selected after tabulating this season's fan voting. Each week, five nominees were chosen and NFL fans voted for the winner on

Following is a closer look at the five 2003 2003 PEPSI NFL Rookie Of The Year finalists:

NICK BARNETT (Green Bay Packers) - Barnett started 15 of 16 games for the NFC North Division-winning Packers, leading the team with 112 tackles, ninth best in the NFC. He also recorded 2.0 sacks, three interceptions, one fumble recovery and three passes defensed. Barnett won the Pepsi Rookie of the Week award in Weeks 2, 5 and 6 and was nominated five times.

ANQUAN BOLDIN (Arizona Cardinals) - Boldin broke the NFL rookie record with 101 receptions, which ranked third in the league. He led the Cardinals with 1,377 receiving yards, also ranking third in the NFL, and eight touchdown receptions. The only rookie to be voted to the Pro Bowl, Boldin had five 100-yard receiving games, including his 10-catch, 217-yard, two touchdown performance in Week 1, the most impressive debut for a rookie wide receiver in NFL history. He started all 16 games and was nominated nine times for the Pepsi Rookie of the Week award, winning the award in Week 1.

DOMANICK DAVIS (Houston Texans) - Davis rushed for a team and rookie-high 1,031 yards and eight touchdowns on 238 carries, becoming the first Texans player to surpass the 1,000-yard mark in a season. He also became the first Texan to rush for 100 or more yards in a game, a mark he reached four times, when he rushed for 129 yards on 27 carries in his first career start in Week 7. Davis, who started 10 games, also caught 47 passes for 351 yards. He was nominated for the Pepsi Rookie of the Week six times, winning the award a record five times, including an unprecedented four consecutive weeks, in Weeks 7, 8, 9, 10 and 13.

ANDRE JOHNSON (Houston Texans) - Johnson led AFC rookies with 66 receptions for 976 yards and four touchdowns, leading the Texans in all three categories. Johnson broke several Texans season records, including most receptions in a season, most receiving yards, and most 100-yard receiving games in a season (three). He was nominated four times for Pepsi Rookie of the Week, winning the award in Weeks 4 and 11 and finishing second once.

TERRELL SUGGS (Baltimore Ravens) - Suggs led all rookies with six forced fumbles and 12.0 sacks, fourth most in the AFC, and broke the Ravens team rookie sack record of 11.5. He also recovered three fumbles, the third most in the league by a defensive player, and recorded an interception. Suggs was nominated four times for Pepsi Rookie of the Week, finishing second once.

This is Pepsi's second year as the official soft drink sponsor of the NFL.

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